What are some of the effects of antenatal steroids on the mother?
A rise in the white blood count (WBC) may occur as early as two hours
after the first injection of betamethasone.
• The mean WBC increases by about 30% within 24 hours.
• The WBC count generally returns to baseline three days after the first betamethasone or dexamethasone injection .
Hyperglycemia may also occur as early as 3 to 8 hours after
antenatal steroids have been given. Glucose values return to normal 24 hours after
the second dose in nondiabetic patients, but may remain elevated for up to 5 days after
the first dose in diabetic patients
Transient improvement in blood pressure control,
increased urinary output, decreased AST, and increased platelet count
has been seen in
patients with HELLP syndrome treated with corticosteroids (dexamethasone
more so than betamethasone) .
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And may remain elevated for up to 5 days after
6. Mathiesen ER, et. al., Insulin dose during glucocorticoid treatment for
fetal lung maturation in diabetic pregnancy: test of an algorithm [correction of
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8. Isler CM, et. al., A prospective, randomized trial comparing the efficacy of
dexamethasone and betamethasone for the treatment of antepartum HELLP
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